Coban Wrap – A Tool Everyone Should Have That You May Not Know About

I recently read about Coban Wrap in Tim Ferris’ email post 5-bullet Friday. I was surprised to learn that Tim didn’t know about Coban Wrap and its many uses. In medical school, we used Coban for just about everything, medical and non medical. I thought this would be a good article for those who don’t know about this great product that most people probably think it’s just for hospital use.

I use Coban for just about all of the motocross, cycling and UFC athletes. It does a great job of keeping gauze over the wound allowing the athlete to continue physical activity. I especially like Coban Wraps for travelling. Everyone knows that Deep Venous Thrombosis can develop during long plane flights. Most people think that you need some expensive compression garments. But wrapping your calves with Coban Wrap before a long flight is easy, cheap and hides easy under pants. Another simple use of Coban is for Venous insufficiency that can lead to recalcitrant leg ulcers or Deep Venous Thrombosis. Compression has been shown to be effective in healing these ulcers, but most products are difficult to apply and uncomfortable for patients, leading to inconsistent/ineffective clinical application. Coban Wraps can last up to about one week.

Coban works via a latex-free, medical-grade polyurethane foam laminated to a cohesive backing. When compressed, the foam grips the skin, and the nonwoven backing provides a cohesive surface for the attachment of the outer layer. The outer layer consists of a cohesive bandage designed to provide therapeutic compression. The material has been designed to be used at full stretch to ensure an easy and reproducible application. The proprietary interlocking materials cohere to each other, creating a rigid sleeve that conforms to the limb and reduces potential for uncomfortable slipping or bunching. The absence of slippage ensures that sustained compression will last throughout the wear of the product. The inelastic sleeve provides the required stiffness to distribute muscle contraction forces equally beneath the bandage, thus supporting the muscle pump and reducing edema.

Practical uses for Coban Wraps include scraps and abrasions, leg and calf compression to treat edema, wound compression, sport injuries, and much more. In the hospital we use it for burn patients, lymphedema treatment for cancer patients, and wound management. Non-medical uses include wrapping Coban around a steering wheel or other devices where grip is necessary. If you have sweaty palms, a Coban Wrap can help grip shovel and axe handles.